Professional Football Betting: A Critical Review

The Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992, a federal statute forbidding sports gambling, was recently overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court, paving the way for individual states to legalize sports betting. The decision has generated so much buzz that ESPN has started keeping tabs on whether states have passed the required legislation to allow sports betting.

Every state has the potential to allow sports betting, but we were interested in the status of football betting in its current iteration. To learn who is betting, how they are betting, and how much of it is legal, we polled over 770 people. I’ll bet you can guess the solutions. Betting on it is not something we suggest.

Is Sports Betting Mostly a Fad Among the Young?

According to our poll, millennials are more likely to have wagered on a professional football game than any other age group. Bets on football were made by over 31% of individuals born between 1981 and 1996, more than double the percentage of Gen Xers. Fewer than 10% of the baby boomer demographic reported ever placing a wager on a football game. This group was also the least likely to wager on points scored or gained.

Strategies for Sports Betting

More than 40% of existing football gamblers across generations said they anticipated to increase their wagers once sports betting became legal, with members of Generation X providing the largest net gain to the sector. Almost eighteen percent of Generation Xers who didn’t gambling on football before said they were planning to start doing so. Future prospects are excellent for anyone seeking to capitalize on the high volume of wagers placed by football betting enthusiasts.

Do People Who Are Willing to Make a Wager Feel Dissuaded by Illegal Gambling?

Gambling occurs anywhere there is a desire (and the belief that one can accurately anticipate the outcome of an event with as many variables as a football game). The fundamental question is whether or not they are prepared to engage in unlawful gambling.

Although some states have made sports betting legal, this is not the case everywhere. More than 41% of gamblers partake in legal football betting, which is only a slight increase above the number of gamblers who engage in illegal sports betting. Almost 20% of respondents indicated they didn’t care which side won, they gambled regardless.

Younger generations were more prone to make greater average bets than older generations when it came to trying to win big. They had a higher average income than previous generations by $11 per year.


The Big Bets

The proliferation of fantasy sports sites is one method people are getting around the ban on traditional sports betting. These contests take place every day, and instead of betting on teams, participants wager on the results of certain players. DraftKings and Yahoo Sports Daily Fantasy tied for first place when it comes to spending. More than 52 percent of all fantasy football activity occurred on just two sites.


Probabilities This Year

More than half of all people of all ages have used a fantasy or daily fantasy site. The millennial generation didn’t exactly lead the pack in this respect. Almost 63% of Gen Xers, but only about 61% of millennials, wager actual money on fantasy football.


Bet on Boston Every Time

Who here would be interested in a Big Game rematch this year? Those who wager on sporting events. People bet on the New England Patriots and the Philadelphia Eagles to meet in the 2019 Super Bowl at Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium, despite the Eagles’ 2018 victory over Brady and the Patriots in Minneapolis. Nearly a third of respondents said they would wager on Boston to win a record sixth championship.


More over 12% of respondents were interested in wagering that the Philadelphia Eagles would win a third consecutive Super Bowl. These four teams accounted for more than 55% of the total answers, with the Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers each above the 5% threshold. No one seriously thinks either the Bengals or the Bucs have a shot at the Super Bowl. It’s too bad for Cincinnati and Tampa.


If you’re going to gamble, don’t take a sack.

The masses have spoken, and they favor legalized sports betting. With the Supreme Court’s ruling, many people’s long-held hopes of being able to legally bet on the outcome of a football game have come true.



Using Amazon’s Mechanical Turk, we were able to get responses from 771 individuals. There were 3.5% females and 60% males in the sample. The ages of the participants ranged from 19 to 76, with 34.9 as the mean and 10.2 as the standard deviation. Those who were evidently not paying attention were disqualified (either because they failed the attention check question or because they entered data that was blatantly inconsistent). We applied age and gender weights from the 2016 US census to the collected data. This work has not been evaluated for statistical significance and is intended solely for amusement.


Self-reporting is the foundation of the data we give here. Self-reported data has various limitations. Problems with selective recollection, telescoping, attributing responsibility, and exaggerating are only a few examples.

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